I’ve tried to be supportive. I’ve tried to be patient. But this morning, my Yahoo! News had a proclamation that made me wince….
Taylor Hicks to play Teen Angel in Broadway’s ‘Grease’
Now, I will preface my remarks with the statement that I am a substantiated Taylor Hicks’ fan. I think the dude has talent in spades, and I sincerely want him to prove the critics wrong and show that he’s not your average ‘idol’.
But Broadway? Really? Why? Kat McPhee, yes…Taylor, absolutely not.
I can’t help but think that this is some kind of AI commitment, because I really can’t explain it. When I think of Idols on Broadway, I think of Rueben as Fats Waller, Fantasia as Ms. Ceely, Diana DiGarmo as Penny Pingleton, Jennifer Hudson as Effie (yes, I know it was the movie version of Dreamgirls) and sadly, Clay Aiken in Spamalot.
In my narrow little mind, I simply don’t see Taylor in the same bucket. I mean, his whole appeal was as the anti-idol, stickin’ it to the man, rebel without a cause….and now he’s Teen Angel? I mean Danny Zuko or even Kinicky, but Teen Angel? So now Taylor will forever be associated with Frankie Avalon and Beauty School Drop Out?
Think about it. How is this good for his career? Will Warren Haynes, Snoop Dogg, and Keb ‘Mo be attending his debut? I don’t think so.
I cannot accept that Taylor is doing this of his own volition. Given the pipeline from Idol to Broadway, I can’t help but think that this is some kind of attempt by AI to further emasculate Taylor. Who knows exactly what’s in the original iron-clad AI contracts…Perhaps he had no other choice. In my heart of hearts, I hope that is the case, because I cannot explain how this role at this point in his career will help. All this does is further entrench him as just another idol “production” and further distance him from the street cred he so desperately needs to re-capture. Is a stint in Grease pandering to the older, nostalgic crowd? Lord, I hope he’s not that transparent.
Personally, I think small-venue tours, sporting events and private gigs are better than this “opportunity”. I love Taylor, but he’s either doing this out of servitude to a legal commitment or he’s succumbed to the lure of celebrity and the magnetic heat of the spotlight.
Either way, I’m disappointed.
Disclosure: I don’t need a history lesson on Taylor and his prowess, as I have been there since the beginning, so please…you have a right to disagree with my opinions but please keep comments on a civil level. I really DON’T want the wrath of The Soul Patrol. And, just for the record, I don’t want or need hits to my blog by mentioning Taylor. I would like to get hits to my blog for writing about The Midnight Special, however. (See previous post.)